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The effect of calcium on hatching brine shrimpFeatured science projectScience project video

Abstract

This science fair project was performed to find out the effect of water calcium content, on the hatching of brine shrimp eggs. The science project experiment was done using water with different calcium concentrations of 0.1mg/100ml, 0.2mg/100ml and 0.3mg/100ml.

Hypothesis

Higher concentrations of calcium in water will make brine shrimp eggs hatch more quickly.

Scientific Terms

Crustacean, larvae, nauplii, microscopic algae, metabolically inactive, stasis

Background

Brine shrimp

Brine shrimps are aquatic crustaceans known to have existed for over a thousand years. Their eggs are able to remain in a state of total stasis for as long as 2 years, in conditions without oxygen, below freezing temperatures and even above boiling temperatures. In short, they are extremely hardy! They will remain metabolically inactive during this period in a condition known as "cryptobiosis" or “hidden life”.

However, once the eggs are placed in salted water, they will be able to hatch within a few hours. The hatched larvae are called "nauplii" and they measure about 0.5 mm in length. The average life cycle of a brine shrimp is 1 year. During this period, a matured and fully grown shrimp can grow up to 1 centimeter in length.

Brine shrimp found in the wild will normally live on microscopic algae and plankton. The brine shrimp that is grown in cultures or inside aquariums are normally fed with yeast, egg yolk, soybean powder or wheat flour. Brine shrimp are normally able to tolerate different levels of water salinity.

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Complexity level:
8
Project cost ($):
30
Time required:
2 hours to prepare, 3 days for the science project experiment
Material availability:
Easily found at pet/aquarium store
Safety concerns:

None